France's Fifth Republic, which operates as a permanent coup d'état, will end up by devouring politics itself. Its principles, its values, its procedures, its rules, its parties, its institutions, its customs, its manners, its overarching common purpose, all those elements that maintained a semblance of democratic culture shared by the majority of parties and citizens. Here it is, dying before our very eyes, taken hostage by a maniac who is destroying all its symbols and trampling over all its points of reference.